For 7% of people with Bell's palsy, facial impairment is permanent. The case study patient was a 48-year-old female who had no recovery from paralysis 12 weeks after onset. Goals were to restore facial sensory-motor functions, functional abilities and reduce depression. Facial paralysis was assessed by clinical observations, the Facial Disability Index and Beck Depression Index. Complementary interventions of aromatherapy, reflexology and electro-acupuncture were used with common physical agent modalities in an intensive home activity and exercise programme. The patient had 100% return of function and resolution of depression after 10 days of intervention. The limitation of this study is that it was a retrospective case study and the investigators reconstructed the case from clinical notes. Further research using a prospective approach is recommended to replicate this study.
2009 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd